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Maria College Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching


Maria College Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning 

Welcome Back, Faculty!

What's New for August ?

Resources as you prepare for the Fall 2021 Semester

Top course design and teaching tip for August: Infusing your learning activities and teaching to further metacognitive development will assist students to improve academic performance and become reflective, self-regulated learners and practitioners. For students planning to enter the health professions this is of particular importance, as Medina, Castleberry, and Persky's article (2017) in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education makes apparent. The authors share how these skills not only benefit students, but also, patients, as they help to reduce errors and hindsight bias. Well worth a read!
Medina, M. S., Castleberry, A. N., & Persky, A. M. (2017). Strategies for Improving Learner Metacognition in Health Professional Education. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education81(4), 78. 
From Pearson's Digital Learning Now. Free webinars for faculty:
August 3 | 3:00–3:30 p.m. ET: Busting the “But I’ve Never Been Good at Math” Myth With Your Students with George Woodbury
August 10 | 3:00–3:30 p.m. ET: Foundational Study Skills for Science Students with Melissa Murray Reedy
August 24 | 3:00–3:30 p.m. ET: Preparing for the Underprepared: Leveraging Education Technology for Equitable and Inclusive Education with Dr. Drew Berrett

From the Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Low-Stakes Quizzes Improve Learning and Reduce Overconfidence in College Students
by Kevin L. Kenney and Heather Bailey of Kansas State University. 

From Faculty Focus:
Use Revise and Resubmit Instead of Extra Credit by John Orlando, PhD.
Teaching with Care: Why Community is at the Heart of Successful Pedagogy by Juli S. Charkes and Mitch Fried of Mercy College
PodcastHow to Increase Student Engagement with an Engagement Rubric with Melissa Schettler

From The Chronicle Teaching:
How Your Syllabus Can Encourage Students to Ask for Help
How to Make Breakout Rooms Work Better

From  ACUE: Student Mental Health and Faculty: Q&A With Dr. Sarah Kelchen Lipson of the Health Minds Study.

The Importance of Failure in Learning:

From the Journal of Teaching & Learning Inquiry 9 (1), 2021, Paul Feigenbaum explores the role of the growth mindset and mastery-oriented pedagogies, the myth of meritocracy, and stigmatization of failure in learning: “Telling Students it’s O.K. To Fail, But Showing Them It Isn’t: Dissonant Paradigms of Failure in Higher Education”

  What do you believe about teaching and learning?

Bryan Goodwin shares some thoughts we might consider, and debunks some long-held erroneous "zombies" that may be holding us back, in his article for Educational Leadership, "Zombie Ideas in Education".

FERPA and Protecting Student Privacy While Using Online Educational Services: Requirements and Best Practices


Professional Development Opportunities

Professional Development Opportunities
September 1-2, 2021 RAISE 2021 Conference
September 20-24, 2021 Online Learning Consortium Accelerate Conference
September 29-October 1, 2021 Focus on Teaching & Technology Conference


an open laptop on a desk with two hands typing on the keyboardDrop-in to the Center! We hope to be able to welcome you back in our center soon. When we do, you will find us upstairs in Main Building in Arts and Sciences wing. In the meantime, we are available for virtual consultations.

Our computers are set up with software for you to trial for presentations and lecture capture. We have instructional guides and headphones with microphones for your use. 

Digital Accessibility: How does your course measure up? 

SUNY Online has developed the Course Quality Review Rubric (OSCQR), a research-based professional development tool for faculty to further online course quality, effectiveness, and efficiency. The rubric lists 50 standards across the following areas of an online course's learner experience:  Overview and Information; Technology and Tools; Design and Layout; Content and Activities; Interaction; and Assessment and Feedback.

Review Blackboard’s Exemplary Online Course Program Rubric to review your online course. The rubric addresses key aspects of an effective online course including design, interaction & collaboration, assessment, and learner support, and will offer strategies to make your course exemplary!

Designing courses with accessibility and digital inclusion in mind is one way to demonstrate our commitment to equity in higher education and ensure we reach all learners, and provide a meaningful learning experience for all. Here's a link to a Digital Accessibility Checklist created by Christina Moore, Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Oakland University. (Creative Commons License CC BY-NC). 

If you have questions about accessibility, navigability or Universal Design for Learning, please contact M-CELT via the link below.


Transformative Learning

with Thomas Barker, University of Alberta 

A Virus Without Papers: The Impact of COVID-19 on Immigrant Communities
with Elizabeth Kiester, Albright College 

Gender Neutral Language

with Deborah Bennett

        Oppositional Mindset 

with Bonnie A. Green, East Stroudsburg University 


Mission-Centered Teaching

What is meant by the Catholic Intellectual Tradition?

In our mission statement we explain that Maria College's commitment to career-relevant, opportunity education is rooted in the context of the Catholic intellectual tradition. This tradition is embraced by Catholic colleges and universities around the world. Boston College has created a document to foster discourse amongst faculty across disciplinary boundaries about what this tradition means for their teaching. Although Boston College is rooted in the Jesuit educational tradition, and Maria in the Sisters of Mercy, the document offers a historic introduction to how education at Catholic colleges engages with "the ultimate search for truth that animates faith", and how this serves as "the catalyst for inquiry": 

The Catholic Intellectual Tradition: A Conversation at Boston College



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Inside Higher Ed

A daily news brief about what’s happening in higher education around the country, as well as career advice and information for jobseekers.

Faculty Focus

A free newsletter that shares effective teaching strategies for the college classroom.


The Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (JoSoTL) is an open journal.   


Not All Flipped Classes are the Same: Using Learning Science to Design Flipped Classrooms by Alyssa Lawson, Caylor Davis, and Ji Son.

Contextual Framework for Developing Research Competence: Piloting a Validated Classroom Model by Lynn Jamieson and Mark Lawson.

Breaking Through Student Bias with Creative Debate Assignments by Daniel M. Settlage, University of Arkansas-Fort Smith

Addressing Uncivil Behaviors in the Classroom: 

Applying "politeness theory" to address uncivil behaviors in the classroom and the relationship between faculty caring  and student engagement in    'If They Don’t Care, I Don’t Care’: Millennial and Generation Z  Students and the Impact of Faculty Caring by Amy Chasteen Miller, and Brooklyn Mills, University of Southern Mississippi


New to Teaching?

Nine Characteristics of a Great Teacher, with Dr. Maria Orlando

Reflections on Teaching Mistakes I've Made, with Professor Chris Palmer, School of Communication at American University.

From the Archives: 

July Highlights

Faculty Focus Podcasts:  

  • Metacognition—The Bridge to Student Success with Ben Blood

  • Overcoming Student Distaste for Collaborative Group Work Online with Wendy Trevor

Magna Twenty-Minute Mentors: 

Log in to access resources. Access instructions can be found in the Faculty Orientation to Teaching at Maria and your email (10/7/2021):

  • How Can I Make My Video Lectures Effective and Engaging? with B. Jean Mandernach, PhD              

How to Be a Better Online Teacher by F. Darby, The Chronicle of Higher Education

7 Guidelines for Effective Teaching Online by S. O'Malley, Inside Higher Ed 

How to Adapt Courses for Online Learning: A Practical Guide for Faculty by S. Cruickshank, Johns Hopkins

Tips for Effective Online Discussions:

From Inside Higher Ed and EduCause 

Neuromyths  and Evidence-based Practice in Higher Education: An International Report


A student in an advising session with a faculty member


Effective academic advising goes beyond helping students decide what courses they need to fulfill degree objectives. It speaks to the education of the whole person, as Winston, et. al reflected (1984): "Developmental advising relationships focus on identifying and accomplishing life goals, acquiring skills and attitudes that promote intellectual and personal growth, and sharing concerns for each other and for the academic community". The article, Developmental Academic Advising: A 40-Year Context by Thomas J. Grites in the NACADA Journal 33 (1): 5–15, offers an overview of the significance and evolution of this approach. 
Encouraging Self-Advocacy: How to Build Environments for Awareness and Self-Disclosure for Learners with Disabilities by Melissa Brevetti, PhD, and Bradley Mays, PhD



Teaching Questions? Would you like a strategy or educational technology consultation?

Here are just a few areas for consultation: Questions about Blackboard capabilities and using interactive tools such as blogs and wikis; Rubric development; Giving effective feedback; Active learning strategies; Universal and Backward Design for online courses; Implementing group work; Developing assignments that foster metacognitive and writing skills; Moving a F2F course online.

Please complete the following form to make a request for an appointment with Kim or Wendy. Please be sure to state what you need help with, your name, email and what times you are available during the week.



Kim Santspree, Educational Technology Training Specialist (ETTS),

Jason Coley, PhD, Assistant Director, M-CELT; Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs; Academic Liaison to Strategic Planning

Wendy Trevor, PhD, Director, M-CELT;  Associate Professor, English; Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs.


The Center is staffed in person by our ETTS:

Tuesday and Thursday  8:30-4 PM

By appointment

As a result of the move to virtual instruction, our hours have changed. We continue to be  available for remote consultations and for Blackboard, Blackboard Collaborate, Zoom and Panopt pedagogical support Monday through Friday by appointment. To set up an appointment, please send an email to Kim. For Blackboard troubleshooting, please contact the IT Help Desk.